November 14, 2022 | Projects Products Trends

Sydney properties upgrade value with Smartstone surfaces

Two inner city Sydney properties upgraded their value with Smartstone surfaces in amazing home transformations on Binge original series Selling in the City. Led by interior designer Rosie Morley and landscape expert Paddy Milne, the home renovations in the series are geared towards selling properties higher than the appraised market value through innovative and creative solutions.

High end Smartstone porcelain surfaces uplifts family home


Featured Project: Kingsford NSW
Featured stone: Absolute Black and Calacatta Prestigio porcelain
Stone Fabrication: Made in Stone


After inheriting the family home, owner Mali sought to increase the value of their home in the Sydney inner city suburb of Kinsgsford and sell it for a profit that she can share with her mum and siblings. With an initial appraisal of $1.95million for the property, Mali invested $60,000 to renovate and reach a selling price of $2.3 million, a huge leap and big challenge for the renovation team.

Situated in the middle of everything, Kingsford is located 7 kilometres southeast of the CBD with easy transport access and a multitude of schools in the vicinity.

Typical in the area, the Californian bungalow is big enough for family living with 3 bedrooms and a huge backyard. The design vision was to bring the lifestyle of the eastern suburbs, particularly the outdoors, into the big Kingsford home.

One of the priority areas, the kitchen was easily the main selling point. To achieve a layered effect, Rosie separated the dining and kitchen areas with two new walls and designed a galley-style kitchen with sideway benchtop using Smartstone’s Absolute Black porcelain. With a 300mm overhang, the Absolute Black benchtop which allows seating while looking out into the backyard, establishing the seamless flow between the indoor and the outdoor. Using a neutral and earthy palette that is pleasing to the eye and has universal appeal, the kitchen featured black sinks and tapware for the added level of design refinement to go with the Smartstone’s Calacatta Prestigio benchtop and splashback.

Absolute Black and Calacatta Presigio are two of 10 porcelain surfaces by Atlas Plan imported from Italy and available through Smartstone in Australia. Absolute Black stands out for its deep, intense, absolute black granting ambiances a sophisticated, contemporary feel while Calacatta Presigio is ideal for interior design projects that look to enhance the elegance and purity of volumes.

Despite a small renovation budget, the team and the suppliers were able to ensure the design yielded maximum value, with the kitchen as the main event and heart of the home. Using black outlines receding the tunnel vision feel, the beautiful kitchen delivered the high-end feel with luxurious Smartstone porcelain surfaces and black fixtures.

At the end of the project, the family home was appraised a value of $2.35 to $2.5million, earning the family at least $250,000 more than what they had spent for the renovation.

Ibrido and porcelain combo revives beauty of 1800s cottage


Featured Project: Leichhardt NSW
Featured stone: Ibrido Tundra Grigio and Calacatta Prestigio porcelain
Stone Fabrication: Deemah Stone


Pressured to sell their 140 year old cottage in Leichhardt in order to move into a bigger family home, homeowners Scott and Meghan invested $90,000 to give their ancient home a makeover and increase its appraised value of $1.5 million by at least 13%. Dubbed as the Little Italy in Sydney, Leichhardt is located in the hip inner city west only 5 minutes away from the CBD.

Targeting family buyers, interior designer Rosie Morley and landscaper Paddy Milne aimed to design the 1800s cottage for those who are drawn to a culturally diverse neighbourhood with a heap of personality, requiring the kitchen to appeal to a sociable lifestyle. Inspired by the rich culture in the community, they successfully converted the little Victorian cottage into an Italian-inspired villa using high quality materials such as Smartstone engineered surfaces.

In demolishing the U-shape of the kitchen, Rosie changed the layout so it became the space that anchored the home design, converting the humble cottage kitchen into a statement piece and space that can cater to large family gatherings Italians are accustomed to. With the range and hood in the centre of the back wall, a giant island was detached to allow unhindered movement around the kitchen for food preparation, cooking, dining and socialising.

Almost 1500mm wide, the new massive island bench features the beautiful Smartstone Tundra Grigio with a waterfall edge, an undermount sink, and casual bar dining for three. Using the same surface, the splashback extended from the base of the cooktop all the way to the ceiling, creating a uniformity in the space as inspired by Greco Roman architecture characteristics of colossal frameworks and symmetry. One of 7 new engineered stoned in Smartstone’s new low silica Ibrido Collection, Tundra Grigio recreates a popular limestone surface with versatile grey tones and subtle brown veining that enhances its rich texture.

Featuring symmetrical joinery and cabinets in the back, the kitchen exudes a sense of luxury and grandeur as well as provide much needed storage space with light grey cabinetry to seamlessly match the stunning Tundra Grigio benchtops and splashback, adding strength of form in the design. As a final touch, Rosie added a bespoke handmade timber serving board that sat neatly on the island bench, capitalising on the perfect combination of stone and wood for textural contrast as well as “rustic and traditional, yet elegant feel to the design.”

Designing the courtyard for large family gatherings, Paddy changed the layout to an L shape to make it more conducive to socialising, channeling a Tuscany piazza and adding an outdoor brick oven. In the outdoor fountain, Paddy cladded the Italian-inspired feature with Smartstone Calacatta Prestigio porcelain by Atlas Plan.

With the support of suppliers, the design duo exceeded their target and increased the property value from $1.5million and to a maximum selling price of $1.9million.

Watch on BINGE.

share on